TORONTO —; City child care, community centres and garbage collection east of Yonge Street are among the services that will be shut down if 28,000 unionized workers go on strike or are locked out next week.
City Manager Peter Wallace laid out the contingency plan Friday in case of a labour disruption that Mayor John Tory warns has a “real chance” of happening.
Wallace said that while essential services like paramedics and long-term care homes will be maintained, a work stoppage “will have an impact” on citizens’ lives. Building permits and programming at city facilities would also be stopped, Wallace said.
“We simply do not have the resources available to use to continue those services.”
READ MORE: Toronto unions and city negotiators swap proposals as strike or lockout looms
Wallace said that while city negotiators continue to work for a “fair” deal before the Feb. 19 and 20 deadlines, after which a strike or lockout involving inside- and outside-workers’ CUPE locals 79 and 416 may begin, the public needs to know ahead of time which services would be affected.
“We want to make sure the public is aware of this as early as possible,” he said.
#CityofTO announces labour disruption contingency plan. Details: https://t.co/qrDZ0LbrAD
— City of Toronto (@TorontoComms) February 12, 2016
Other municipal services such as transit, police, fire services, community housing and all but four library branches will continue as normal, said Wallace, while snow-clearing services are largely contracted out and wouldn’t be changed.
But some 4,200 managers and non-union staff will be drawn on to staff waste treatment facilities, welfare payments, the winter homeless outreach program, shelters, the refugee-helping newcomer office and other areas, Wallace said.
A priority will be placed on maintaining health and safety, the city’s top bureaucrat added.
The unions responded by saying that they’re still focused on reaching new contracts before deadline —; not about which services would be cut.
“The city certainly seems to be expressing a sense of urgency, but if they’re doing so they need to come back to the table,” said Local 416 negotiator Matt Alloway.
Tory issued his warning Thursday afternoon in a letter to council that said the unions are taking a “no concessions” approach to bargaining.
READ MORE: Strikes or lockouts possible within weeks as talks between Toronto and unions break down
Hours earlier, the unions said they had made a joint proposal to the city that would save money on benefits, but admitted the two sides remain far apart on the key issue of job stability.
That proposal was rejected by the city’s bargaining team, who made their own proposal this week they say is in line with other public-sector agreements. The municipal negotiators have said they’re looking for new collective agreements that “respect the city’s financial circumstances.”
WATCH BELOW: Representatives for CUPE locals 79 and 416 announce they’ve made cost-saving proposals to the city
The unions have accused the city of proposing major cuts at the bargaining table.
Local 416 represents 5,400 outside workers, including garbage collectors and parks staff while Local 79 represents 23,100 inside workers, including nurses, social service employees and ambulance dispatchers.
Both unions have gone without contracts since Dec. 31. Their members have given negotiators mandates to call strikes.